Be Useful and Productive
By Benjamin H. Liles
But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love.
For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For he who lacks these things is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins. ~ 2 Peter 1:5-9, New King James
I take the greatest care to make sure things in my life work together in fulfilling God's command to helping others. There are times where I cannot like when I am sick or when someone needs my continual help, daily. But the thing of it is that doing things in and by faith, adding knowledge as well as self-control even an enduring heart and godliness, which leads to extending love for God's family, when these things are in great abundance my life is effective and productive.
Think of it the way Jesus gives us the parable of the mustard seed: "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that a man planted in his field. That seed is the smallest of all seeds, but when it grows, it is one of the largest garden plants. It becomes big enough for the wild birds to come and build nests in its branches" (Matthew 13:31-32, Mark 4:30-32, Luke 13:18-19, Expanded). If our faith is increased in goodness (another word for virtue) and we increase in knowledge as a result, which leads to having self-control and having an enduring heart, we can experience godliness and also brotherly love.
These things make it possible to have a fruitful life. For if we have an abundance of these not only are we nourishment for one another, but it makes it all the easier to teach in love and grow alongside one another. It is for this that we are told "the priestly work that has been given to Jesus is much greater than the work that was given to the other priests. In the same way, the new agreement that Jesus brought from God to his people is much greater than the old one. And the new agreement is based on promises of better things" (Hebrews 8:6, Expanded).
We shouldn't lack anything the Lord has given us. He epitomizes all things that God is. For if Jesus had not opened the eyes of the blind so they could see, healed men and women from lameness so they could walk and dance with joy, or even unstopped ears so they could hear the good news of the love of God we wouldn't be able to stand before God Himself. We have Jesus the Messiah as our high priest. Jesus Himself alone mediates on our behalf so we can stand without blame before a holy and just God. But it means we work out for ourselves His love so others can find rest and nourishment from us.
If we think on what Jesus says in regards to being a mustard tree of faith, not only will those who need rest and solace be able to rest in the boughs of the tree, but they can rest in the cool of the shade. Those who come to Him can receive the goodness of His love. We can now find rest, peace, and favor in Him from those who show the fruit of Him and His loving kindness. It is for this reason when I can and am able to do so I keep doing what I do with this website/blog. I do so in order your faith may be made complete. And not only that so you may find hope, rest, favor, and the love of God that is found in His Son Jesus the Messiah.
Father, God, I thank You for this day. I thank You for the love You give to me to give to others. I know I can do no thing on my own but by You and what You would have me do. I see in Your word the way You want me to be and I delight in doing these things. Not only that but I see how much You desire to give me to others, and then some. I don't have much to give in terms of wealth, but what You give to me is far more precious than that. I have Jesus, who forgave me my sins, so I may help lead others to You and to shine the light You gave me back to them who so desperately need Your light to be on them. Your truth is the light. Your love shows the way. And I thank You for what You do daily. In Jesus I pray. Amen.